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Pikemere follows a teaching for mastery approach to mathematics, which enables all children regardless of their starting points to master all elements of the mathematics curriculum. It draws upon research conducted by the EEF (Education Endowment Foundation) as well as the NCETM (National Centre for the Excellence in Teaching Mathematics) and their recommendations.

The purpose of our mathematics curriculum is to ensure depth of conceptual understanding through progressive acquisition of mathematical fluency, problem-solving and reasoning skills. This helps our children to know more and subsequently remember more.  At Pikemere, we use the White Rose small step planning resource, as well as others to supplement children’s learning experiences. All children from EYFS to Year 6 are taught concepts through a Concrete, Pictorial and then Abstract approach. When first exposed to a new concept, they use concrete or real resources, they then see the concept modelled through pictures and when secure, children are then able to explore the concept in an abstract form. All year groups are taught in mixed ability groups, with scaffolding, timely intervention and directed support in order to achieve the lesson’s learning objective. Teachers expect that all children will be able to work on the learning objective at their own level in order to master the concept. All children are given opportunities to talk about their understanding and are supported to use mathematical vocabulary from EYFS. They are also given opportunities to use their maths in real problem solving activities. Children who grasp concepts faster than others are given the opportunity to explore a concept more deeply through tricky, trickier or trickiest questions. We use a variety of problems from NRICH to ensure that all children are able to problem solve collaboratively as well as independently. Collaborative learning allows children to support each other’s progress. Children understand that “going deeper” challenges will allow them to construct and apply their learning. Questions structured with a “greater depth” of complexity will also be provided allowing some children to work towards a fuller understanding through deeper exploration and investigation of content and context.

Our Year 1 Mathematics curriculum builds upon the skills and knowledge the children have gained during their time in our EYFS.  Through the NCETM Mastering Number programme, the children will develop a strong grounding in number so that they have the building blocks to excel mathematically and a strong base from which the mastery of maths is built. They will have gained a deep understanding of number to 10, including the composition of each number, be able to subitize and know number bonds to 5 and 10.  They will have looked at patterns within numbers to 10, including evens and odds and double facts and the pattern of the counting system to 20 and beyond.  They will also have looked at quantities up to 10 in different contexts and be able to say when one quantity is greater or less than or the same.  They will have been given frequent and varied opportunities to build and apply their understanding through the use of manipulatives, to spot connections, look for patterns and relationships and to develop a ‘have a go’ attitude. Whilst teaching the National Curriculum, we follow the White Rose Premium scheme of work to ensure coverage and which have built in the NCETM ready to progress criteria following the period of possible missed learning due to COVID 19. White Rose also follows a small step planning format for both conceptual and procedural understanding, giving due consideration to common misconceptions that are likely to occur. Additional quality materials may be used to supplement these. Topics are taught until teachers feel that an appropriate depth of understanding has been achieved by the vast majority of the group. Gaps in learning are identified in a timely manner and addressed through pre teaching sessions and in some cases, same day intervention. We expect all topics within the National Curriculum to have been covered over the course of the year. Children use concrete, pictorial and abstract models for each topic as appropriate to the learning context. Research conducted by the EEF underpins our expectation that a variety of manipulatives and representations will be used in all year groups and with children at all levels of attainment. See our Calculation policy for examples of these. This supports learning before procedural methods are used, and allows children to select from a range of strategies for both efficiency and to support success. Procedural methods for calculation are taught alongside mental and structural methods for fluency and variation. Children will be expected to apply this learning within a range of contexts rather than completing extended procedural practice. Fluency does not equate to speed but to efficient choice of strategy which may well increase speed, particularly when trying to recall times tables.

A typical lesson will look like this:
A clear learning objective of what we will be learning that day
Link or bridge back to prior learning
Modelled use of concrete and pictorial resources to expose mathematical structures
Guided use of concrete and pictorial resources
Explicit teaching, exploration and use of key vocabulary
Independent practise
Varied fluency
Reasoning opportunities
Problem solving opportunities

Children are encouraged to have a go and through growth mindset, mistakes are valued as part of the learning process. Marking includes a variety of self marking, peer marking and live in the moment marking from the teacher who is able to give verbal feedback and support in a timely manner. Incorrect answers are not marked with a x but a dot and an F for the child to have a go at a fix it. Fix it time is built into lessons.
All children are given daily practise of arithmetic skills to enable the processes to be embedded in long term memory. This will include practise of the 4 operations, and times tables, as well as extension STARS in KS2 which encourage children to make a target number using smaller numbers and the 4 operations.  

Assessment opportunities:
Daily assessment for learning informs the teachers planning and allows them to plan for next steps in learning. Formal assessments are carried out at the end of each term and provide internal data as to an individual child’s progress and long term memory of concepts. Using detailed question level analysis, teachers are then able to plan meaningful opportunities for all children to become fluent in all concepts.  

Next steps:
To ensure that all children are being exposed to appropriate challenge within lessons.
To ensure that all children are exposed to opportunities to problem solve over a series of lessons.  

Pupils leave Pikemere School with a secure understanding of all aspects of the mathematics curriculum and they see how this knowledge and understanding can be applied to real life. They are well prepared for the next transition in their education; ready to build on their embedded mathematical skills.

Pikemere School Alsager
I love Pikemere School because the Teachers and TA’s are nice and helpful. Whenever you are upset they will talk to you – whatever it is.